Despite this, I did still manage to snap a few shots of the Yarrowee River as it runs through town on its way down to join the Barwon at Inverleigh (by which time it has become the Leigh). At this point, I know very little about the Yarrowee and what I've seen so far isn't impressive. This poor river as it runs through Ballarat is little more than an open drain.
|Grant Street bridge over the bluestone-lined Yarrowee River|
|The Yarrowee River looking upstream from Grant Street towards town and|
the confluence with Canadian Creek
|The same view as above on a nicer day|
|View from Grant St looking down river|
|"Lake" Wendouree in May, 2007 during the drought with Mt Buninyong|
in the distance
The origins of the name Yarrowee however are not so clear. It seems to be most commonly held that the name was given to the river by the Scottish settlers to the district who named it after Yarrow Water, a river in Scotland. However while we were in town we dropped in to the Gold Museum at Sovereign Hill. Here I found an alternative explanation. It was suggested that Yarrowee is in fact a Wathaurong word meaning "big storm".
Other names from the region reflect the influx of peoples of all nationalities to the goldfields. A tributary of the Yarrowee I mentioned earlier is Canadian Creek. Out of town and south west of Buninyong (a Wathaurong word meaning "man lying on his back with his knee raised" - yes, really!) is Scotchman's Lead.
One ethnic group who represented a quarter of those on the goldfields but who were intensely disliked by the other miners were the Chinese. Whilst their presence is not prominently reflected in today's place names, I do know that the Chinese referred to the Victorian gold diggings as "The New Gold Mountain" - the other being the diggings in California - and hence the title of this blog post.
As I said, no spectacular photography for this post, but hopefully I will soon rectify this with some photos of the more rural parts of the river.